If you’re looking for more freedom and flexibility than a 9-5 office job can offer you then you’re probably considering working from home. It can be quite hard to tell what online-based jobs are genuine, worthwhile opportunities though, so it’s best to do some research and fully understand what your options are.
These are seven of the most popular jobs you can do at your kitchen table:
Businesses need writers for everything from website copy to article writing, emails, and social media posts. Bigger companies will often have in-house writers, but there are a lot of businesses that frequently work with freelance writers to get everything they need to be done.
If you’re a fairly confident writer with a good grasp of grammar then freelance writing could be a great opportunity to work from home.
To get started you’ll need a portfolio with examples of your previous writing work. If you don’t have any yet, put together some samples and offer to do some writing for anyone you know with a business website so you can get something online.
You can find freelance opportunities on sites like Upwork where you can list your services, and find companies with projects or work advertising for writers. It’s also worthwhile setting up your own website where you can share work examples and publish your own writing.
You’ll either be paid on a per article basis or in some cases on the number of words — it’s important that you have a clear agreement of fees and deadlines before you start.
Similar to being a freelance writer, blogging relies heavily on your ability to write and create engaging content, but you’ll focus on producing it for your own site. While it’s fairly straightforward and cheap to start a blog — you just need a website, and something to write about — it can be a long time before you start seeing any income.
You’ll need to consistently invest a lot of time and effort into producing regular content, promoting it, and getting visitors on your site to read it. Once you have an established blog with a growing audience, it’s possible to monetise your blog through affiliate links, sponsored posts, onsite advertising, and even selling products.
If you’re highly organised and happy to pitch in with whatever needs to be done, then a virtual assistant position is a good work from home opportunity. You could be doing anything from organising diaries and arranging meetings, to HR admin, data entry, or proofreading.
The main requirements to be a virtual assistant are excellent organisational skills, clear communication, and the flexibility to take on whatever is thrown at you. You’ll also need to be confident with basic computer software like Microsoft and file sharing tools such as Google Drive or Dropbox.
Some previous experience as an assistant, office manager, receptionist, or in HR would give you an edge, but if not any office experience can be a good start. You could be working on a freelance basis and charging per hour, or sometimes companies will offer a permanent, full-time, salaried position that can pay up to around £30,000 per year.
Take a look at the Society of Virtual Assistants for guidance on getting started and how to make a living as a virtual assistant working from home.
Data entry is a job that can be done from pretty much anywhere.
You could be entering anything from research results to financial data, or updating inventory, whatever it is you just need a computer, internet connection, and the ability to type quickly and accurately.
You could find data entry work on an adhoc, freelance basis, or look for more permanent positions with market research companies, hospitals, universities, or financial organisations.
Tutoring students is a really flexible online job that you can do from home — it’s ideal for teachers (retired or current), or anyone who has fairly extensive knowledge of certain subjects. You can pick the hours that you want to work and fit online tutoring in around your schedule.
Generally, you’ll be working one-on-one with students tutoring them on specific subjects via video call, email, or phone call. But it’s also possible to tutor classes or groups of students at the same time.
You just need a computer, internet connection, and webcam or headset with a microphone to get started. You’ll also need to be confident, and able to clearly communicate and explain things without getting frustrated.
A lot of people choose to go through online tutoring companies so that they can find jobs quickly, and there’s some structure already in place. These companies might require you to have certain qualifications or experience of the subjects you want to teach.
Pretty much every business or organisation needs a website these days, which means there’s a lot of demand for web developers as most people don’t have the skills or the time to do it themselves.
To get started, you need some coding experience and preferably a portfolio of successful websites to demonstrate what you can do. If you don’t have the coding knowledge yet, there are a lot of online coding courses that can teach you the basic skills in a few months. With a bit of practice, you’ll be able to create straightforward websites and develop your skills from there.
Customer service adviser
There are a few different types of customer service roles you can do from home, but generally, you’ll be responding to emails or live chat conversations with a business’s customers, some might also require you to answer inbound phone calls. It’s a relatively straightforward job that can be done pretty much anywhere with a quiet space, computer, phone, and reliable internet connection.
To get started, you’ll need some similar experience in a customer-facing environment, great communication skills, and some IT knowledge. With most roles, you’ll probably get trained by the company on their specific product or services so that you can answer questions.
You’ll probably need to be quite flexible with your working hours, and work some evenings or weekends.
You can either find online customer service jobs where you are an employee, but some roles will be temporary and you’ll be self-employed.
These are just some of the genuine work-from-home, online jobs that are available to you. When it comes to working online there are a lot of opportunities to earn a bit of cash on the side or to start a whole new career from your kitchen table. To get started, you just need a computer, internet, a bit of experience, and a lot of determination.